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CHILDREN 404 (#HotDocs14 Review)

Hot Docs 2014
Directors Ashkold Kurov and Pavel Loparev

Anonymous: The social worker and psychologist say a lot of crap, like this homophobic bullying is entirely my fault because that’s me who can’t accept the homophobes.

If you remember the “It Gets Better” campaign from a few years back, you will remember those videos from LGBT community members speaking out to LGBT youth with the promise that one day life will get better (as opposed to right now…. don’t even get me started). But imagine living in a place like Russia, where 2013’s decision to put a ban on “Gay Propaganda” not only has a severe effect on the access to LGBT information, but the safety of an entire community. So basically kids in school don’t have info on sexuality unless it’s heterosexuality, and according to the new documentary, CHILDREN 404, life seems to be getting worse, not better.


The film opens with audio clips from the many anonymous youth who have been brave enough to participate in the documentary (yes, anonymous is still brave in this situation) and share their experiences with us. And they aren’t good. Aside from the constant bullying and threats, they are also being told by their educators that who they are is wrong and disgusting. One of the subjects, Pasha, has dreams of moving to Canada (and since has!), finding a nice boyfriend and falling in love. It seems simple enough, but don’t we all just want and deserve to be loved? And in Pasha’s situation his type of love could get him landed in prison, or worse.

Taking its name from what happens when a page is not found on the internet, CHILDREN 404 highlights the day-to-day struggles of LGBT youth living in a country that wants to silence the community and give power to those who are making their lives miserable. Tough to sit through, but unfortunately this is still an issue happening in the world today, and we all need to know about it.

4 sheep

#HotDocs14 Screenings

04.28, 9:30 PM, Isabel Bader Theatre

04.29, 3:30 PM, TIFF Bell Lightbox

05.01, 9:00 PM, TIFF Bell Lightbox

05.03, 8:30 PM, TIFF Bell Lightbox

Click here for tickets!


Your turn!

How many sheep would you give Children 404?



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